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Subject: Granados' GOYESCAS -an auspicious and grand production from the IN SERIES in DC (12-10-16)
From: Alan Savada <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Alan Savada <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Mon, 12 Dec 2016 16:05:01 -0500

text/plain (31 lines)

I mentioned a week ago that the IN SERIES had a short preview of its current production of GOYESCAS as the Residence of the Ambassador from Spain, but how little I knew about the entire 2 hour production at that time.

This work has only two more performance this weekend (12/17 &18) at Gala Hispanic Theatre in DC and for anyone who likes checking out rare works, this is a chance in a lifetime.

The production may be pared down, with simple seta by Jonathan D. Robertson and a one man orchestra at the piano with Carlos Cesar Rodriguez, but the capable cast and uniquely amazing costumes by Donna Breslin, along with English text by Elizabeth Pringle make this a memorable evening; perhaps one of the best ever productions from the IN SERIES!

Act I is a reminiscence of Granados himself of his home in Madrid as he heads home from the world premiere of Goyescas(at the Met Opera) in March 1916. The section consists mostly of songs by De Falla set in a Madrid café, and while the plot is of no consequence, it is framed with 3 of Granados' La maja dolorosa songs beautifully sung by Cara Gonzalez in a company debut, but also a very special professional debut. The dancing choreographed by director Jaime Coronado is superb with two dancers in Act I joined by another in the opera itself (Act II).  Oscar Ceville is an impressive actor standing in for Granados himself, who actually died along with his wife when their ship home was torpedoed by the Germans.

The amazing story of Granados himself aside, the approach here by write Elizabeth Pringle was truly superb. The second act was the Granados opera itself, Goyescas, which runs about an hour and incidentally had 5 performances only at the Met in its world premiere run (the same number as the In Series has, director Carla Hubner noted prior to the show). It is an intense verismo-style work and the cast did it well with a most notable company debut by Fairouz Foty as Rosario, joined by the three leads: Peter Burroughs as Fernando, Patricia Portillo as Pepa and Alex Albuquerque as Paquiro. The ensemble was excellent and featured a large group for In Series:

Adriana Gonzalez, Cara Gonzalez, Elizabeth Mondragon, Chris Herman, David Wolf, Tom Mirenda, Garrett Matthews, Simon Charette, and dancers Alisa Bernstein, Sara Herrera & Heidi Kershaw.

In the first act we had projections of Goya's masterworks, but in Act II the performers had the same costumes from the artwork themselves; a true credit and superb execution by Ms. Breslin.

It's a really amazing take on the true story embedded with the dramatic opera itself, not to be missed by opera lovers anywhere!

ALAN SAVADA of Washington, DC

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